6.8/10
4,257
41 user 26 critic

Bite the Bullet (1975)

A group of ex-rough riders, an ex-prostitute and a gunfighter enter a horse race in the desert.

Director:

Richard Brooks

Writer:

Richard Brooks
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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 1 win. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Gene Hackman ... Sam Clayton
Candice Bergen ... Miss Jones
James Coburn ... Luke Matthews
Ben Johnson ... Mister
Ian Bannen ... Sir Harry Norfolk
Jan-Michael Vincent ... Carbo
Robert Donner ... Reporter
Jean Willes ... Rosie
Mario Arteaga Mario Arteaga ... Mexican
Dabney Coleman ... Jack Parker
John McLiam ... Gebhardt
Bob Hoy ... Lee Christie (as Robert Hoy)
Jerry Gatlin Jerry Gatlin ... The Wood Cutter
Sally Kirkland ... Honey
Walter Scott ... Steve (as Walter Scott Jr.)
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Storyline

At the beginning of the 20th century, a newspaper organizes an endurance horse race: 700 miles to run in a few days. 9 adventurers are competing, among them a woman, Miss Jones, a Mexican, an Englishman, a young cowboy, an old one and two friends, Sam Clayton and Luke Matthews. All those individualists will learn to respect each other. Written by Yepok

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

In the tradition of Shane and High Noon, a new Western Classic is born! BITE THE BULLET See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

1 May 1975 (Australia) See more »

Also Known As:

700 Meilen westwärts See more »

Filming Locations:

Jacob Lake, Arizona, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$11,000,000, 31 December 1975
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Metrocolor) (uncredited)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Whilst on location in New Mexico in 1974, Paul Stewart suffered a heart attack. See more »

Goofs

When Jan-Michael Vincent's horse is shot in pursuit of the convicts, a rope, possibly used to create the fall, is seen trailing behind horse and rider. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Gebhardt: I heard your newspaper is running an honest race.
Reporter: You heard right, Mr. Gebhardt.
Gebhardt: Who the hell handicapped this owlhead as the favorite?
J.B. Parker: The smart money!
Gebhardt: That's what we come to get.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Behind the Action: Stuntmen in the Movies (2002) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Unusual Western with a Good Adventure
11 July 2011 | by claudio_carvalhoSee all my reviews

When a newspaper sponsors 700-mile endurance horse race, a group of adventurers is attracted by the grand prize of US$ 2,000.00 for the winner.

Among the participants are the former Rough Rider Sam Clayton (Gene Hackman), who fought in the Spanish-American War, and protects the animals from cruelty; his friend Luke Matthews (James Coburn), who has also fought in the war, and now is a gambler; the ex-prostitute Miss Jones (Candice Bergen) that has a hidden agenda to run the race; a Mexican (Mario Arteaga), who has toothache, and needs the money to help his poor family; the young bully Carboa (Jan-Michael Vincent) that does not respect anybody; the anonymous Mister (Ben Johnson) that wants to be famous; the Englishman Sir Harry Norfolk (Ian Bannen) that has traveled a long distance expecting to win the race.

Along the days of competition, greed and betrayal affect the contestants' performances. But in the end, the survivors learn lessons of friendship and teamwork.

"Bite the Bullet" is an unusual western with a good adventure and interesting characters. Candice Bergen is in the top of her beauty but her character disappoints in the end, double-crossing and causing the death of the participants. Unfortunately the lame conclusion is too dramatic and unreasonable, since in accordance with the competition's rules, each horse plus horseman and gear should not weight more than a certain wight. When Sam and Luke unsaddle their horses and lead them to the finish line, it is not clear whether they have broken any of the foregoing rules and did not win the race. My vote is seven.

Title (Brazil): "O Risco de uma Decisão" ("The Risk of a Decision")


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